This week I have some great news for fans of Doc Martin! ITV, who broadcast the show in the U.K., recently confirmed that there will be an eighth series!
Actor Ian McNeice. who plays Bert Large, was the first to announce the news, in an interview he gave with the Daily Mirror newspaper last month. According to Large, ITV held a special party “with the best food and drinks ever” at the end of season seven, which had the cast seriously wondering if the show was going to be axed.
“We were thinking this is looking pretty”, said Large, “is this a goodbye? We were getting a little nervous. Then we had a cast and crew photograph and we had never had that before.”
It turned out the cast had no need to worry. The ratings for the show had been the best ever – on par with Downton Abbey.
“Everybody in the cast was there”, said Large, “and then the head of ITV gets up and says ‘We love Doc Martin and as a vote of confidence we would like to give you one more show’.”
Understandably, everyone involved with the series was thrilled with the news. I’m sure you are too! Even though we’ll have to wait a while for it to come to our screens. In keeping with the tradition to always take a year off between filming, season eight won’t be made until 2017, which means it won’t be available for airing here until 2018. But I’m sure it’ll be well worth the wait.
The break in filming probably gives Clunes and his wife Philippa Braithwaite, who produces the show, a little more time to spend on their Dorset farm, where they breed sheep and cattle. Clunes takes an active part in the running of the farm and especially seems to enjoy lambing season.
“It’s a bit like a maternity ward”, said Clunes when being interviewed a couple of years ago by the Express. “When you haul a lamb out and hear the first bleat it’s really nice. Then you have to go back in and check if there’s another. Sometimes there’s triplets.”
You can see Clunes in Doc Martin on Thursday nights at 9pm on MPT.
To contact Heather:
Address: Afternoon Tea
Maryland Public Television
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Owings Mills, MD 21117